With Jonah Bolden’s (New South Wales, Australia/Findlay College Prep) commitment to UCLA earlier this week, there are now only four uncommitted prospects left in the ESPN 100 and still a slew of high-major programs, including Kentucky, Kansas, Arizona, Baylor, Texas, Connecticut, Iowa State, Oklahoma State, Minnesota and others, looking to add pieces to their 2014 recruiting class.
It doesn’t take an economics professor to realize that’s a market where the supply is far from meeting the demand. It also means that many programs are going to need to get creative to find the value they seek in this class. Here’s a look at some of the most common strategies:
1. Analyze and evaluate: At this point, odds are that programs aren’t finding a diamond in the rough that is going to come in and put up huge numbers from Day 1. That doesn’t mean good players can’t be found. The best way to find value in an oversaturated market is to pinpoint the specific niche that you’re looking for. The most cohesive teams are ones that are built with a combination of dynamic playmakers and what Seth Greenberg has dubbed “blend” players -- guys who do whatever is necessary for the good of the team, and there are still plenty of those types of players to be found. Whether you’re looking for an outstanding perimeter defender, offensive ball-mover, or court-spacer the key is to know exactly what your roster needs and evaluate specifically for your system while also accounting for intangibles, like toughness and unselfishness, necessary to thrive in such a role.